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VuFind Developers Call Minutes: February 21, 2012

Attending: Filipe Bento, Lutz Biedinger, Chris Hallberg, Demian Katz, Ere Maijala, Eoghan Ó Carragáin, Sean Purcell, Ernie Simuro, June (no last name given)


1. New/Updated JIRA Tickets

  • VUFIND-140 - This old ticket for centralizing the export process has been closed since it is no longer architecturally compatible with current VuFind code; however, some ideas from this design have been incorporated into VuFind 2.0.
  • VUFIND-165 - There was some discussion on this ticket about the behavior of VuFind searches that contain colons; Demian plans to investigate possible improvements to this behavior as part of implementing e-Dismax (VUFIND-466), though this work probably won't happen until after the initial VuFind 2.0 release candidate is completed.
  • VUFIND-276 - Filipe has posted an update to Luke's feedback patch.
  • VUFIND-316 - A bug in VuFind's shard support has been fixed; a patch is posted here (and has been committed to trunk, post-1.3 release).
  • VUFIND-325 - Language file inheritance has been implemented in VuFind 2, so this ticket has been closed (equivalent functionality is unlikely to be implemented in 1.x).
  • VUFIND-423 - Work is continuing on the EBSCO module, and an updated patch has been posted.
  • VUFIND-468 - Eoghan has posted a link to a live demo of the flickr patch here.
  • VUFIND-492 - This ticket has been closed since a blank description line has been removed from the .deb package metadata; however, it's possible that other Debian-specific issues remain since the package is still only tested under Ubuntu.
  • VUFIND-493 / VUFIND-499 / VUFIND-501 - These three XSLT-related tickets have been closed now that Filipe has provided an example import configuration (NDLTD - in trunk) that demonstrates all of the appropriate solutions.
  • VUFIND-502 - This ticket provides a patch (committed as part of the 1.3 release) which allows the XSLT importer to better detect failures during import.
  • VUFIND-503 - This ticket reports missing translations in the blueprint theme; a fix has been committed.
  • VUFIND-504 - This ticket provides a patch that allows larger lists of tagged records to be displayed (beyond the Solr boolean clause limit) at the price of losing some functionality (facets, etc.)
  • VUFIND-505 - A patch to allow expanded checkbox facet functionality has been posted here; Demian will look at this more closely when he implements checkbox facets in VuFind 2.0 and will assess whether to commit this to the 1.x trunk at that time.
  • VUFIND-506 - This ticket is a reminder to look into implementing the Goodreads API as another review source option.
  • VUFIND-507 - Support for title-level holds has been added to the trunk (currently only supported by VoyagerRestful driver).
  • VUFIND-508 - Some problems with Solr retrieval of records with strange characters in their IDs have been fixed; a patch is posted here. Some problems still need to be resolved in the way these IDs affect Javascript code on the client side.
  • VUFIND-509 - The OAI harvester needs to be updated to handle HTTP redirects.
  • VUFIND-510 - This ticket suggests adding a feature which sends email confirmation notices to users when they place holds or renew items. Obviously, this would be optional.
  • VUFIND-511 - This ticket requests support for Content Cafe reviews and summaries (currently we only support book covers from that service).

2. VuFind 1.3 Release

The 1.3 release went out on time; no major bugs reported yet.

3. VuFind 2.0 Update

Demian has completed basic single-record export support. This is now done more generically than before – all the behavior (HTTP headers and optional redirect-to-service) is handled via export.ini and generic record driver templates, which should make adding new export options simpler. It will still be necessary to add bulk export support (the bulk logic in 2.0 is not yet complete), but this should be simpler and less redundant than before due to the new configuration-driven model.

VuFind 2.0's install process is now in place. The old platform-specific tools are gone in the interest of making installation more universal. A command-line PHP tool auto-configures the Apache configuration to help get web access in place. A web-based “install wizard” then takes over, creating the database, auto-configuring some items and providing tips on solving common problems. Currently the installer is English-only; there is a lot of complex language that made translation difficult. If we need installation in multiple languages, perhaps we should approach this in the same way that we did help screens.

Demian has begun implementing “local override directory” functionality – it is possible to create a directory that contains configuration, language and library files that override the VuFind core. You can have multiple override directories that are set to work with different Apache aliases in order to have different configurations of VuFind served from a single copy of the software. There are some limitations: themes can't fit into this model because of the way their resources (images, CSS, etc.) are served; some Zend components (controllers, models) don't easily lend themselves to this because they allow only single source directories, not search paths. Do we hack Zend core to allow overriding, avoid these mechanisms where possible or live without override capabilities for these things? Perhaps safest to defer on major decisions until Zend Framework 2 is available.

The [Extra_Configs] section of config.ini has been eliminated as it is no longer appropriate given the local override directory mechanism. It has been replaced by a [Parent_Config] section which allows you to specify a path to a “parent configuration” from which your current configuration inherits. This allows you to chain together multiple configurations if you need to – you could create a central shared configuration and then just override a handful of settings in each local directory. Another setting within the [Parent_Config] section allows you to specify which sections need to be completely overridden and which need to be merged with the parents. Obviously, all of this is optional and most people won't need to use it – but it's available if it's needed.

The translation routine has been updated to support two new features:

  • Tokens within strings, to allow sentences to be properly formatted in multiple languages (i.e. “showing results start - end of total”).
  • Default values may be provided to use if no translation is found; this will allow better namespacing of the language files (i.e. facet_format_Book with default value of Book).

There is still a large amount of work necessary to actually reformat the existing translation strings to take advantage of these features.

Chris and Demian took a look at the latest ZF2 beta release; it will definitely be a lot more than just a drop-in upgrade to switch from ZF1 to ZF2 – further investigation is deferred until more documentation is available.

Demian has begun work on porting the cart and bulk action logic to VF2; everything is being rewritten to allow mixed record sources (i.e. not just Solr, but also Summon, WorldCat, etc.). As part of this work, the logic for loading multiple records from multiple sources has been rewritten for greater efficiency (when possible, we load all records from each source as a batch instead of loading things one record at a time).

Chris has continued work on improving test coverage.

4. New Mobile Theme

No major news, apart from minor holds-related enhancements.

5. VuFind Developers Summit 2012

The next in-person VuFind meeting at Villanova will be October 15-16, 2012. If you are interested in attending, please fill out this survey.

6. Other Topics?

Eoghan reported on the VuFind Collections module meeting at the National Library of Ireland – Luke came from Swansea with an archivist and there were discussions on both technical and data-oriented issues. Luke is working on getting Swansea archival data into his iFind implementation of VuFind; he has been building on the VUFIND-421 and VUFIND-441 tickets to support Axiel Calm, an archival management system. The meeting provided some ideas for boosting and contextual searching as well as special labeling for archival data in custom templates. The group also looked at (and committed to the collections SVN branch) some of Ere's contributed code (as he has been participating in email conversations even though he did not attend the in-person meeting). Demian joined the meeting via Skype for a brief period, and he has committed to indexing VuDL data into the collections-branch code to see how well that works.

Ere is continuing work on a Record Manager application which combines some OAI and record processing logic to help with loading various record types into VuFind – he's currently improving EAD support.

We discussed the possibility of moving the meeting time back an hour earlier to allow easier participation from Finland; we'll keep the next meeting at the current time but put this on the agenda for future planning.

Next Call

The next call will be Tuesday, March 6, 2012 at 11am Eastern Standard Time (GMT - 5:00).

developers_call/minutes20120221.txt · Last modified: 2014/06/13 13:14 by